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tv   Washington This Week  CSPAN  March 18, 2012 1:00am-6:00am EDT

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from billionaire's giving you the super pac. what we have is more important. i am looking at it. my secret weapon here in illinois and across this country -- [applause] this campaign will be about freedom. it will be about economic opportunity, energy, manufacturing jobs. i'm the only person out there that talks about a plan that will get this economy turned around, not just by a lowering energy costs, but by taking a one-two punch to try to bring the jobs that allow people of all skill levels to rise in our society. [applause] i grew up in a steel town of western pennsylvania. i know the opportunities that manufacturing creates coming here and across this country. this country was built on the
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back of hard-working people making things here in america. [applause] some people believe those days are gone. they are not. the only reason we lost those jobs is because government made manufacturing uncompetitive. the highest corporate tax in the world. the most onerous regulatory environment. on day one, we will repeal every high-cost obama regulation that was put in place in the last four years. [cheers and applause] we are going to work with democrats and republicans from the industrial states to eliminate the corporate tax on manufacturing until every manufacturer from all around the country and all around this world come to america to build your business, grow your
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business, make things here in america. [applause] we are going to say america is going to be a place where you can be secure. we are going to put this government on a big-time diet, the biggest losers. [applause] we will shrink this government. we will get a balanced budget in five years. we will cut five trillion dollars and five years. i will spend less money each year until we get to a balanced budget. [cheers and applause] finally we will have a
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president who understands where the budget problems are. they're not where the president has focused his attention. his focus has been in one place and cutting the budget. he refuses to cut it anywhere else. the military. the people who go out there to defend our freedoms. that is where the president says we need to cut. you would think by the president's rhetoric that is the area that has exploded under his term or under president bush's term. we have seen this dramatic expansion of our military and we need to shrink because it is causing the deficit.
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let me share with you a couple of facts. when i was born, the defense department, military was 60% of the federal budget. it is now 17% of the budget. when i was born, entitlement spending was less than 10% of the budget. it is now 60% of the budget. that does not even count obamacare which takes that number to 70% of the budget. i will not cut the defense department. we will have the strongest military in the world. i was the author of the bill and amendments that bill as a freshman senator against 10 kennedy and two lines in the
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senate and a 31 freshman senator from pennsylvania. we want. -- we won. we won because our ideas were better. it coincided with the vision of our country. these welfare programs have no business. none. most of them are run by the states any way. what we need to do is what paul ryan suggested and what i did in the senate. take all of these programs, 40 of them, cut them. in some cases cut them dramatically. send the money to the states with two conditions. time limits and work requirements. we are not doing that because we are mean. we are not doing that because we care. welfare reform is not about hurting people.
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it was about understanding long- term government depended -- dependency does not help people. believing in the dignity of people to provide for themselves helps people and it turns lives around and makes this country a better country. the last issue -- this is what i do not know what the situation will look like in november. it may be about something that is just anxiety creating. we have had a president who will make neville chamberlain look like an aggressive confront her of people. -- aggressive confront her of evil. he had an opportunity to join the green revolution in 2009 to
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overthrow the radical theocracy that is killing our troops and was killing our troops. he was building a nuclear weapon and threatening our ally israel, and the president said, no. let's negotiate. then we see recently the prime minister of israel coming to the united states and speaking in washington, d.c. the day before president obama says, i have your back. the prime minister stood up and said, time is running out. we have been patient with the
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games your plane. we cannot allow nuclear iran that is threatening to wipe out not just israel but all jewish people. we have been down this road before. we will not let this happen again. [cheers and applause] i spoke from the same podium the next day and said, president obama does not have his back. he has turned his back on israel. that very day, the president announced it would begin negotiations with iran. this is what is the big deal. series of old un resolution say there will be no negotiations until they see is developing an enriching iranian. he said, we do not have to do that. we will still talk to you. we will give you time.
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as we talk, you enrich. you build your ballistic capability. the weapon is that material into a weapon as we talk. we need a president who stops talking to evil and tries to negotiate with evil and stands up and says, we will stand with the people of israel and the iran will not get a nuclear weapon on our watch. [cheers and applause] i let out a concrete proposal and says, if i was president today, i will give an ultimatum to the iranians. when that said you either open up the facilities for us to inspect, begin to shut down the processing, closed down 40
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facilities, or we will shut them down for you. we need to appeal to the persian people. persian people, that is to populate iran. they are persians. look at your bible. these are not people hostile to the jewish people. it is the radicals. we need to embrace them and engage them. we need to understand what america has always stood for. we are a country who does not invade. we do not conquered. we do not grant of land or resources. america has always been a country that has stood for
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liberty, has stood for the liberties of freeing people, prosperity and by the safety and security for our country. we should not have a president who travels around the world apologizing for america and what we have done in helping the world to a freer and safer place. [cheers and applause] my final plea to you is to understand what is at stake and do your duty that this generation is called to do. our tea party folks of had a wonderful influence over the past couple of years.
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they have resurrected a document that had become somewhat of a dead letter. the constitution of the united states. [applause] that constitution is the operator's manual of america. it is how the government is to function. it must be read in context with another very important document -- one that is tethered to. is the anger for the constitution. that is the declaration of independence. [applause] if you look at barack obama and the left, they always tried to dismiss the declaration. they tried to say, that is not a legal document. it was just the sentiments of people at the time.
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it does not have any legal standing in america's jurisprudence or an american law. you cannot understand this document unless you read in the context of these words that you all know also well, but i am not even sure you recognize how revolutionary they truly were. we hold these truths to be self evident that all men are created equal and endowed by their creator with certain unalienable rights. [cheers and applause] our constitution does not give us rights. the constitution recognizes the rights the got has already given us.
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the reason this country has done so well is because we understand the job of the government is limited to one thing the -- protecting the rights that god has given us, trusting the people to go out and take those liberties -- life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. to go out and pursue real happiness as our founders understood it. that was not the freedom to go and do what you want to do, but the freedom to do what you ought to do, what is best for you and your family and your community. that is what america did. that is what created the greatness of this country. it was not some demigod or some defined profit that imposes their will on all of us. it was believing in people. going out and building a good and just society. that is the true history of
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america. [cheers and applause] do not ever for debt that we change the world. -- do not forget we changed the world. life expectancy was 35 as it was for 2000 years. and then america happen. in america happen. it did not happen anywhere else. it did not happen in the third world, china, the russia. america liberated the human spirit. he believed in the dignity of every person.
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give them the ability to reach for the stars, build, prosper, and provide for each other. we actually had relationships and cared for each other. we knew we had an obligation to do so. life expectancy has doubled. in wealth beyond comprehension even 50 years ago all because we had government that believed in you. ladies and gentlemen, that is what is at stake. if you want to bring americans together and remind them of who we really are. [cheers and applause] we have nothing that will stand in the way of free people.
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we can fix every problem not from washington, but by giving you the tools, the opportunity to go out and make things right across the country. trusting you. at the end of the declaration of independence our founders wrote these words. they signed this knowing there were probably signing their death warrants. going up against a far tougher foe. nevertheless, they signed this and they pledged to each other, as i am asking you to do here today. pledge to each other that you will step forward. our founders said they would put their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor.
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nobody is asking you to plug your life over the next 48 hours. nobody is asking you to pledge your fortune. although if you go to -- [laughter] i promise i will not use it to buy a robocall. go on there and sent to be a volunteer and make phone calls. we have less of people here in illinois you can call. it's a have we been able to win. people across this country and all of the nation. they know what is at stake. what is at stake? it is your sacred honor. you are stewards of a great inheritance. you are stewards of a great country. you are stewards of your family name. [applause]
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in fact, your honor will either be upheld or diminished as to whether you can uphold that gift that you have been given from your community, your family, your country. the honor of every american is at stake in this election. let me assure you that just like 1980, when people said we have to nominate a moderate, that is the only way we will win votes, conservatives across the of -- conservatives across this land said know. we want an election that is not
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about the difference between tweedle dum and tweedle dee. we want a choice about where america is going to go. we want to choice about whether we have a president who does not want to be the most powerful men in the world wants to return the power to you, the american people. [applause] i pledge you this. i pledge to this. in the next 48 hours, if you go out and spend your days -- tonight, tomorrow, monday, if you call your friends, you put our pictures up on facebook, i will be working here shaking hands and taking pictures, we
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need you. your country needs you. if you go out -- if you go and do your part. i am doing this 24/7. since i started to run for president i have had five days off of the campaign trail. i have. on the trail every single day doing as many as 10 events in a day. and they will back me up. [applause] i am asking for three days. if you give me three days here, if you turn it out in southern illinois, i know you do not today chance to outgrow your friends up in chicago very often, but this is a primary and turnout is everything. you do your job and this is the
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pledge. if we are able to come out with a surprise when, i guarantee you -- i guarantee you that we will win the nomination, we will nominate a conservative. if we nominate a conservative we will be barack obama in the fall election. thank you. god bless you. [cheers and applause]
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>> mitt romney has several campaign events in illinois on sunday. he will make remarks at the machine that shed a restaurant. you can tune in for live
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coverage. illinois holds its primary tuesday. is one of three contests in march. puerto rico holds its primary tomorrow. louisiana holds primary on saturday. the republican delegate count stands at 4954 mitt romney, 2524 rick santorum, 1314 newton king bridge, and 484 ron paul. -- newt gingrich, and 48 4 ron paul. >> freshman congressman kore gardner delivers the republican address criticizing the president for higher energy prices.
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>> as i know you have noticed over the past few weeks, the price of your pump has been going up and up. because it is an election year, so is the temperature of the political rhetoric. when pat -- what matters to me is the impact the rising prices have on you. it makes things harder. i want to take a minute to explain what steps my administration is taking when it comes to energy. the truth is, the price of gas depends on a lot of factors that are beyond our control. growing nations like china or india increases demand it. one thing we should control as fraud and manipulation that can cause prices to spike even
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further. traders were able to gain energy markets, this toward the price of oil and make big profits for themselves at your expense. there were able to do that because of major gaps that loopholes into regulation. when i took office we did something about it. the reforms the signed into law are helping bring energy markets under real oversight. their strengthening our ability to go after fraud and prevent traders from manipulating the market. it is dangerous that some in congress want to roll back the protections and return to the days when companies like enrod could recall enormous profits the matter who they heard. we are still giving them $4 billion in subsidies every year. congress should be fighting for you, not for big financial firms and oil companies. in the next few weeks i expect
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congress to vote on ending the subsidies. we will put every single member of congress on record. and stand up for the oil companies are the american people. they can place their bets on a fossil fuel from the last century or place bets on the american future. make your voice heard. send your representative and e- mail. tell them to stand with you. tell them to be honest with the. there just is not a quick fix when it comes to gas prices. any career politician who offered -- who offers a three- point plan, they are looking for your vote. if we're going to make sure we're not at the mercy of spikes and gas prices every year, the answer will not be to drill more. we are already drilling more. we are producing more oil at home than any time in the last
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eight years. we quadrupled to a record high. we have opened millions of acres of land and offshore to develop more of our domestic resources. those are the facts. you cannot rely on drilling. not one we use more than 20% of the world's oil. if we do not develop other sources of energy and the technology to use less energy, we will be dependent on foreign countries for our energy needs. that is why we are pursuing and all of the above strategy. we are also developing wind and solar power. thousands of americans have jobs right now because of it. we want to keep making those investments. i do not want to see jobs go to other countries.
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i want to create more in the united states of america. we raise fuel economy standards so that by the end of the next decade our cars will average 55 miles per gallon. that is nearly double than what they get today. that means you only have to fill up every two weeks rather than every week. combined these steps that have helped us put a path to greater energy independence. in 2010 for the first time in 13 years, less than half the oil we used came from foreign countries. we can do better, and we can. we cannot keep depending on other countries for energy needs. we control our own destiny. that is the choice that we face. the price for the future.
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america is what it is today because we place our bets on the future. thank you. have a great weekend. >> driving around the district today, the first and only thing my constituents want to talk about his pain at the pump. gas is gone up 40 cents a gallon in one month. this hurts everybody. it is not just american dollars at risk, it is jobs, too. people are fed up with the way the president is handling this issue. the most forceful thing he has done is try to explain he is against them. americans are right to expect more from their leaders. there have been signs of hope. the president told members of congress he would work with republicans on and all of the
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above energy strategy. republicans have supported and all of the above strategy to develop resources traditional and renewable so we can lower cost and improve security. from day one the obama administration has consistently slow or shut down domestic energy production. there is less acreage offshore for energy production now than there was when the president took office. instead of increasing energy independence, his first major initiative was a an energy tax that would cause rates to skyrocket according to him. he has taken half a billion of tax dollar payments with solyndra. is it any wonder gas prices have more than doubled on the president's watch? make no mistakes, high gas
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prices are a symptom of his failed policies. that is why it is good to hear he would be willing to work with republicans on energy. in the meantime, the house has passed all of the above initiatives as part of their plan for america job creators. there are at least seven bipartisan bills sitting in the democratic senate waiting on a vote. unfortunately, the president has yet to follow through and urged the senate to act. he has called for raising energy taxes, which the nonpartisan congressional research center said would lead to higher prices. he has asked the attorney general to have a task force that has never reported work to the public. he tried to prevent work on the keystone pipeline despite overwhelming support for the jobs it would create.
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just this week his administration pressed to the saudis to produce more oil even that is it works to close off more production at home. government alone cannot work wonders. but on a trip and the oars and job creators can. -- entrepreneurs and job creators can. the longest we let present obama bloc energy production the longer our nation will suffer with high gas prices and limited energy security. there is still time for the president to do the right thing. expandeize the moment, freedom instead of government and secure our energy future once and for all. thank you and god bless the united states of america. >> president obama visited a
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local restaurant near the u.s. capital saturday where he met with patrons. [indistinct conversations]
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[indistinct conversations] >> on
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tuesday, he will meet with the irish prime minister. later in the evening the
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president and first lady will host a reception at the white house. the >> they would wear garments made of homespun cloth. it would be much more rough texture. it would be much less find and the goods they could import from great britain. by wearing this cloth, women were visibly and physically displaying their political sentiment. >> sunday night at 9:00,rosemarie zagarri on the role of american women during the revolutionary war. virginia's attorney general discussing his they pose a loss to going before the supreme court challenging the affordable health care act. >> some people look at his joining the majority the week before the federal government filed their motion to dismiss as
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the harbinger of doom. i do not see it that way, despite very broad language of the case. the last paragraph of the opinion brings broad language down through eighth and final. the federal government cannot get this bill through the funnel. if that is a requirement, i am confident. there has not been enough time to really assess how he is going to -- >> this is necessary and proper as it applies -- >> to the commerce clause. >> you can see the entire interview on "newsmakers" at 10:00 eastern and 6:00 on c- span. it is also available online at >> a discussion on mormonism,
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religion. this event is over one hour. >> we are ready when you are. >> a good evening. my name is mark massa and i am the dean of theology at boston college. i would like to welcome you to this form. boston college, as you undoubtedly know, is an old catholic and just with university in america. my school, down this year in 2008, is the newest component of that venerable institution. with the creation of the school, boston college 6 to deliver on -- seeks to deliver
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on its commitment of being one of the premier places in the u.s. where catholics and religious people do serious thinking, including their thinking about how theology engages the world. an important part of that is fostering informed discussions, like the one we will have this evening, about how theology and religion do and should focus discussions about the serious political and social issues facing our country. this evening, our colloquialism is entitled, are mormons the new catholics and jews, mitt romney and the state of the political union. tonight, i am delighted that this inaugural program has three individuals to set the bar high for this annual event. the moderator for this evening's colloquium is alan
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wolff, prof. of political science here at boston college, and the founding director of the center for religion and public life. joining him are khristine hagel and, the editor of dialogue, and contributor to the mormon blog entitled "by common consent." we are equally honored to have with us withprothero, a friend from a graduate school and a contributor to cnn's belief blog, and the author of the much acclaimed book entitled "god is not one." of the aid rival religions of the world and why their differences matter. we are also very grateful to c- span for their broadcasting this event this evening. please join me in welcoming our colloquium participants this evening. [applause]
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join me in welcoming our colloquium participants this evening. [applause] >> thank you very much, father. it is my pleasure to host this event. we will begin right away. the format is going to be -- and i'm going to ask these two distinguished panelists a few questions, start the discussion, they will then respond. we will keep going as a conversation and an expert corporate -- at an upper bridgepoint we willurn to you for questions. as you have been told, iyou have a question, please go up to a microphone and asked it. if this is tuesday, there must be republican primary somewhere. and it seems there is a republican primary, as it happens, the states of alabama and mississii. when this event is over and you have had time to reflect on all the wisdom you here, you will also pretty much have a sense of what the results are. i can tell you two things about
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the republican voters in the primary in advance. one is, the large majority of them are southern baptist. and the second is, none of them are really going to get a chance to vote for a southern baptist. ron paul is technically someone from the southern baptist convention, but he is actually a follower of a jewish atheist from st. petersburg, rand, which is his true religion. here's the question, given the legacy of a certain kind of anti-mormon stiment that has been characteristic of various protestant denominations throughout our history, will southern baptist boat for mitt romney -- a vote for tt romney in significant numbers? >> i grew up in nashville, tennessee. my house was about a milerom the southern baptist convention
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offices, and my inclination is that a very few republican southern baptist voters will vote for mitt romney. and they might not even be able to say exactly why. they just think that mormons are vaguely weird and other. >> do you think so too, stephen? >> i think one of the surprises so far is how willing and evangelicals have been to consider mitt romney. that has been a surprise to me. he won the evangelical vote in new hampshire and in nevada. he was very close in a couple of states and in the southern state in general, he has been pretty far behind. the other trick is that, as you intimated, allen, his competition is two catholics. that is tricky if you a evangelicals that things that kaplan -- that catholics are not quite christians and mormons are not quite christians. u do not have a lot of places to go in this election. one interesting reason that is
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the case, you know, i do not wonder at the extent to which the anti- -- i do wonder the extent to which the anti-mormon of sentiment has been so powerful. there has been sentiment about whether you would vote for a moment -- a mormon if the nomination went to one. those numbers have been pretty high since 1967. only about 20% of americans will admit that they will not vote for a mormon. but even there, there is a difference between voting for a mormon in the abstract and then voting for a particular mohrmann. a lot of voters, including some born-again christians are saying, well, i don't want to vote for a mormon, but i will vote for mitt romney. >> you seem to disagree to an extent with what stephen just said, but you also agree with what he said about southern baptists. the typical white american
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evangelical voter will not vote for a mormon, but they cannot really articate the reasons. i recall a conversation with amy sullivan, a blotter and writer for "time" magazine abrupt -- who grew up in an evangelical church. she said that very few republicans know very little about theology. but when it comes to mormons, and a good baptist can give you 12 the logical reasons about why a mormon is not a christian. >> well, maybe one. >> at the week after the counter cold unit in sunday school at the baptist and methodist church in my town, it was never find in school. it did provide for a lot of the logically grounded conversations. it was a great chance for me to articulate my mormon faith in a
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way that mormons do not really do either, right? everyone knows that mormons are supremely pragmatic and not ideologically oriented. -- not theologicallyriented. i think the way that mitt romney is perceived, even if people do not object to his specific theology, especially since he has not spoken about his beliefs and has made a point not to speak about them, but just the nse that he is awkward, just a little bit not comfortable in his skin -- i think that all has to do with both his sense of otherness as a mormon, and other people's the sense that mormon do not quite fit. it does not have to be an articulate opposition to something to do with more monism. >> can you speak about that sense of otherness as a mormon? >> yes, i think that from the time that mormons are little
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kids, they grow up in the church and they hear the refrain "every member a missionary." there is a song and all kids love it when they are growing up. you learn very early on that mormon as a messiah and to be constantly performed. you have this sense, -- that more monism is to be constantly performed. you have this sense, especially if you grow up outside of utah, that you're on stage. you are showing how good momism is by your actions. without meaning to, and without any ill intent, mormons develop this double consciousness that you are always aware of your auence and always trying to gauge of what might be the best aspect of more monism to show or to hide. moprmoninm is -- momis
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the best to show or hide. >> there was a highly publicized speech and i remember being called to one of the television studios to watch it live and comment immediately i thought it was an opportunity for him to say something about who mormons are and what they believe. he pretty much decided not to do that and almost presented himself almost like an evangelicals. i wonder if you could address this. however pragmatic or necessary for romney politically, it was a great opportunity lost for a prominent mormon to say something about his faith in public to his national audience. >> stephen, i know you are familiar with that speech. >> i do not know what he would
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have had to gain from doing that. >> politically. >> yeah. thought it was a great speech. it was over a week a, right? so, some time a. there was a sense that he made a strong argument for religious liberty. he also made the point, which is something you do not hear from republicans very often, that the u.s. is a country that has oppressed religious minities. he told the story of the oppression of mormons. i think it was maybealf a sentence, or a fullentence. rmons were pushed out to the west by persecutions. i thought that was a pretty interesting speech. it has been compared to the kennedy speech in 1960, houston. kennedy did not give any kind of claim about the causes and
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then. it would not have been smart for him. he did not talk about transubstantiation. it was not -- it would not be smart for him. if you wanted to be the schoolmaster for the nation, that would have been a nice opportunity for him. but i do not think we should expect him to go anywhere near there in the future. >> i also think it has to do with the fact that mormons are not monolithic. people have different personalities. i do not think that romney is especially think-y about his religion. not that he does not understand it, but he is not intrigued by the theology of it the way i am. he is not a nerdy about it. i think he likes martin is -- mormonism in part because it works for him. it helped him build his family. it encourages clean living. he likes those practical aspects
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of the church. in college, i had the opportunity to hear him give a lot of sermons. i cannot remember a single one of them. and it is not because i was not paying attention. remember other people's concerns. >> i can remember any of his speeches. [laughter] he does not -- >> he does not grapple with mormon as some -- mormonism in ways that make sense to me to other people. maybe would make sense if he were trying to do this call master of the country, but it is just not who he is. >> there are some americans who will n vote for a mormon, or by the title of our symposium today is, "is anti- mormonism the new anti-catholicism"and
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there is a certain amount of bigotry against the mormon faith. it is obligatory of mormons to combat the ignorance by saying something more positive? >> maybe, but -- you know, this week and last week, the discussion has been about mormon proxy baptisms. that is an interesting place where there could be an opportunity. there is a lovely theological underpinning to that doctrine. if you believe a certain rituals are necessary for salvation and you have the authority to perform them, it is a lovely universalist gesture to extend those rituals to other people. but if you do not believe that certain rituals are necessary to salvation, and you cannot in any way enter that religious frame of mind, there is no way to
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discuss the theological nuance, or to explain the doctrinal rationale that makes it seem like a perfectly harmless, and even benevolent and kind of practice to get a mormon. it is a gross offense to everyone else. >> is there anything comparable with other minority religions? >> i think, part of what your questions have raised for meat is the question of -- for me, is the question of how other religions mainstream to the extent of tonight about mormon as in, but also catholicism, how does catholicism get from the point of, no, we cannot elect al smith because he is a catholic to that we can elect j.f.k. even though he is a catholic to the fact that we even hardly notice that santorum and others are catholic.
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how does that happen? >> the machine. >> he is a good example. when he is on tv in the 19's and talking about catholicism -- i think it goes more with donny osmond is winning "dancing with the stars appear go oh, he is a mormon -- "dancing with e stars" and it is like, oh, he is a mormon, and he is dancing like us. you started by talng about people saying, when they are voting, they won people to be like them. that is one of the problems with obama. instead of saying that we do not like a black president, we say, i do not feel comfortable with this guy. he is not like me. the wayou have a sense of whether he is an ok guy, or he
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is not too stiff, or he is one of us is not with theology at all. and it is, in part, because our theologies differ. and we do not necessarily want that to go into the public space. but the idea that -- and this is something you have emphasized in your own writings, too -- the idea that we are tolerant an can get along despite our differences, that is what will carry this along. that is where we see these people on "dancing with the stars" or wherever it m be. >> do you think a mormon would benefit -- do you think mormonism would benefit by being mainstream? >> for me, personally, i think it would be a great loss. and i'm not sure it could come out here as a group. it is still too small. if you look at the example of the community of christ, which is the largest splinter group from the mormon church, they
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have essentially become another protestant church with loose ties to the book of mormon and to joseph smith's history. they are losing membership and generally in decline in the way that some mainstream protestant churches are. it is not clear to me that without the weirdness and tension with surrounding society that momism -- mormonism could survive. >> the me give you two scenarios. one that rodney loses. the other is that brahney wins. -- that mitt romney loses. the other is that mitt romney wins. >> is there another possibility? [laughter] >> all of the above? i don't know, the heightened scrutiny with his candidacy has been very good for mormons in some ways.
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there is a chance to sort of clarify what we believe. there is attention to practices that need revision. there is another topic in the news this week, a byu professor was talking about some old mormon doctrines about race that should have long since been repudiated, and have not been. and that is a salutary for the church to look in the corners of its history and to think seriously about the way it treats women and the other questions that come out. i think that is useful. i'm not sure we could stand it for another four years. i could not. >> dyou have a perspective on this? >> i'm also thinking that the assumption before was that the way more monism -- mormonism could teach -- the way a mormon politician could teach, i think there is a way that mitt romney
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could teach in terms of what we do as a community and the family values the side of mormonism, which is the stuff that you are saying was attractive to mitt romney in the first place. but i think this is a provocative and interesting question. i think it would be good for mormonism if " mitt romney were elected. i think it would be a sign, a kennedy was, that this is a tradition that has made it, in a way. and it does not have to be seen as a dangerous cult to others. i cannot believe about to say this, because i'm not a big mitt romney fan, but i think there is a way in which it could be good for america. we have this election that seems, in a way, already so nasty. i am already imagining that is going to be like the election
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of 1800 and be the top two of ugly and venomous elections in american history. but if in the end of that you would see, oh, we can have a non-protestant president and this is a place where a religious diversity and religious pluralism have gone far enough we could elect someone like that, i think that might be good for the country. >> this may sound like an odd question, but i mean it quite seriously. when i look at the situation that mitt romney is basing trying to get the nomination of this party and i look at -- is facing trying to get the nomination of this party, and i look at some of the people he is running against a, here is a man who has been married to only one woman for a very long time. he has a beautiful family. he is the embodiment of american success. and i look at some of the other candates, it is almost like
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ey're looking for someone less perfect, someone who is broken, someone who has sinned and because he has sinned has found redetion in another way. and there is a particular candidateho has been married and as many times as he has had wives, which is not exactly the picture of the straight and narrow. or in the last election where he seemed to lose support against mike huckabee, who had gone on a diet and was trying to cure his big weight problem. there is this sense that mitt romney is to perfect for republican voters, who are raised in a tradition that emphasizes the inherent sinfulness. is that pt of the problem? >> it could be, and that goes straight to the problem of
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whether or mormons believe in greece or not. or in a bracgrace >> do you want to speak to that? >> shourd, mormonism emphasizes predictability and the mormon god is comprehensible to human beings. there is the collapsible of distance, which is the belief that humans and dogs are not ontological if -- different from -- humans and god are not on the logic -- ontologically different, but just different by degrees of glory. >> so, mormons are not
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christian, then, is that where you are saying? >> i'm saying that mormons are still developing a robust theology of grace, which has not always been present. >> i was confused about that. this is precisely why mitt romney does not want to start talking about theology. the interesting idea, the kind of broken person who has been deemed, as the american model. i do think americans love that. it is in our films. it is in our mythology about our country. i think that is deeply christian, but it has also been americanized. it is not just evangelicals who want the imperfect person. that is one way that they are like us, not that they are sinners in the theological sense, but that they have troubles. for all the discussion in the last couple of days about mitt
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romney having friends that are nascarwners, and friends with nfl owners, too, part of the problem has to do with money, but part of the problem also has to do with maybe he is just too close to the gods. he is not like one of us. corexit mitt romney makes his mistakes. -- >> mitt romney makes his mistakes. i can only think of that famous christian saying, all your fault. steven, you used the word republican when talking about mormons, and mormons are not overwhelmingly republicans. you are democrat. and there are many in your family. >> there are 15 of us. >> can you say anything about the attraction of the republican party and how robust is? and will that continue?
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if mitt romney does lose the nomination -- i dbt that he will. there are many who believe he pretty much has locked it up. but if he does lose, he will have lost it twice. will mormons' say, and my inclination is to vote republican, but this party does not want me. >> the democrats do not really want us, either. mormons became mostly republican more recently than you would think. probably right around the time of the era, maybe a little bit earlier. it is a reaction to the '60s, pretty much. it is social conservatism in the sense that those were the most important values. and gender and family became boundary issues within the
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church, too. it always has been. at first, it was polygamous families. then it became these very american, a perfect families. family vues were a natural place for people to go in the 1960's. >> is that part of proving your americanness, the family values? the idea in the late 19th century is that you were not family values, right? >> yes, the tour -- the 1920's through the 1950's. >> if avenue m is going to be the equal rights amendment, the republican party -- you may know the dates on this. but through 1946, the republican platform was for the era. betty ford was one of the biggest proponents of the era. that coincided with the reagan revolution and that sort of
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thing. >> there was a moment for a year or two where mormons were also in favor of the era. then the general release society president came in with her very large hair on fire and saying we could should come against the era. -- we should come against the era. >> one thing that should be noted, we had two more men candidates. the other one has dropped out. jon huntsman has been known as the most moderate of the republicans. the eternal question -- i mean, there are all kinds of questions about relign that can never be definitively answered, but there is one about politics that will probably never be definitively answered. that is, was mitt romney the governor of massachusetts, the real mitt romney, and the guy that is running out - is he a fake?
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romney has changed his position more than a few times. he is generally identified as not the most conservative of the republicans. although, sometimes he has taken positions a little bit to the right of others. i think is fair to say, other things being equal, or if this were a different republican party, he would bethe moderate rain -- moderate wing. his father was, and that is his family background. why are these two moderate republicans not among the most conservative? with many people who do not know much about mormonism and just , and youprejudices cannot get more conservative -- well, in fact you can get a lot more conservative. present form is a lot more conservative. anybody? >> -- rick santorum is a lot more conservative.
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anody? >> do you know any angry mormons? i do not know any angry mormons. they are -- it seems to be in the rick santorum wing of the republican party you have to be kissed off. there is this cultural communication -- you have to be pissed off. there is this cultural communication that you are walking around feeling pretty good about yourself. >> they take it out on mormon immigrants. >> maybe. the star about that. the other thing is, -- sorry about that. >> the other thing is, he is being a pragmatist. to understand him as the nba guy who goes into companies and figures out how to make them work, that is not done ideologically. that is pure pragmatism.
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in some cases you might want to fire a bunch of workers. in other cases you might want to change your product line or the ceo of your company. you do not go marching in with some ideological concept that will work. i think that is who he is and he has been very consistent about that. it sort of changes his view depending on the situation. in massachusetts, the health- care plan seemed to make sense. it seemed to be at the time a pretty conservative republican idea that he was sneaking past the the liberals in massachusetts. now the times have changed and it is seen as a left-wing idea, so he has changed with it. i guess that is saying he is a principled flip-flopper, right? or he is a pragmatic person who ends up on different sides of e issue because of his consistent pragmatism. is there something about the mormon tradition that is not
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that deeply theologically driven, and that would be parallel to a politician who is not very ideologically driven? >> yes, there is this moment when heas running for governor of massachusetts and it was in one ofhe debates and he was asked about casino gambling in massachusetts. you can practically hear the violence well. there are a million great concern -- the voilins swell. there are a million great conservative reasons to be against gambling and a million great liberal reasons and to be against gambling and he says, ll, i need to see the numbers. he just really is kind of like that. it has more to do with his temperament and his mormonism, but there is this element that from the very beginning, there were only in one place for a
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couple of years at a time before they got driven out by mobs. mormonism was all about finding shelter and not getting burned out of it and finding things to eat and growing stuff in the desert. there was not a luxury of caring about someone's theological opinion. >> what about this ongoing relation where you have the tradition of the possibility of change? you alluded to this racist moment in american mormon history. r remember as a kid -- i remember as a kid watching donny osmond on some variety show and they asked him, why can't black men become priests in the mormon tradition, and he said -- because at that time they could not. that changed in 1978 or 75 or something. and he said, well, that is up to the elders of our church and
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that has been our teaching. i remember thinking, that is bad. that cannot be. and he w defending it. but you know, there was a change. and the church flip-flop on the question, right? >> turned on a dime. >> there you have an example inside the tradition that is not a closed canon. you have this theology that is handed down generation upon generation that is never going to change, but there is an understanding that the church can change, too. >> there is always from the very beginning this tension between authoritative revelation, this sort of right of the president of the church to receive guidance from the whole church, and this strong tradition of personal revelation and the idea that all people have the right to have access to have inspiration from god. those two things compete at various times. what is scary about mormon moments in american history is
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when people from the outside are looking at one or the other of those two strains come out one becomes more dominant. it kind of messes with the unstable equilibrium that we have worked out in the church. there is this moment in the church right now where from the 1960's on, there has been emphasis on the authoritative aspect and following leaders, and not questioning, not asking too many questions, not wanting things to change. that probably came to a head in the late 1980's and early 1990's when a bunch of mormon intellectuals were excommunicated. but since then, there was a gradual opening. the historical department published a real honest history of the mountains maddow massacre. is a horrible discussion. they lead to, helen whitney have
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access to the information for documentary and they openely cooperated with that. we are trying to be ok with people talking academically about mormons. i worry that if there is this sense -- you know if the court in new york -- if the "new york times" editorial page is nearing have us, or if the republicans do not vote for mitt romney, that it could crush that moment of revelation and openness that is on the ascendancy. those are always tricky. >> i want to push to vote on this pragmatism question. you have emphasized mitt romney's pragmatism. steven, you have talked about how the mormon chain -- the mormon church has changed on a dime, so to speak. there is something admirable about that because it suggests that being dog -- locked into dogmatic positions or sectarian positions, we would not admire a
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church that held fast to principles of racial segregation and we can appreciate the flexibility of trade -- of change. but pragmatism can go to such an extreme that you wonder if you can trust someone who is so pragmatic that he essentially stands for nothing. it seems to me that is part of mitt romney's political problems these days. i confess to having liked him when he was governor of this commonwealth, and always having a certain sympathy from -- for him. i wrote publicly that i thought he was the victim of anti-mormon prejudice in 2008 and it was a stain on the american polical character that he was. i have to say, watching him this time around, the pragmatism is so wildly out of control that i just do not know what is going to come out of his mouth. i do not associate this with mormonism, but as a character issue with brahney. -- mitt romney. in one of these debates, for
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some reason, wolf blitzer ended the debate by saying "hi, my name is wolf blitzer, and that is my real name." and then he said, hi, my name is mitt romney, and that is my real name. and i started tearing my hair out. his real name is willard. why can he tell the truth about his name? there is a serious question here about whether one can be too pragmatic. as we often say -- i do not, but a lot of americans seem to say they admire the candidates religiosity because it implies there are certain standards to which the candidate here's -- adheres. when your that pragmatic, there is no standard to which you hear too. any comment? >> pragmatism, at least in the business school model that i am thinking of, is a technique. it is not a goal.
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it is a way to get to x. how will we get this company to improve? how will we get this comny to make its certain amount of money every year? we will do what we need to do to do that. there's a pragmatism with mitt romney that he wants to get the nomination, and he is scarily willing to do and say almost anything. and i agree with you, as someone who lived in massachusetts while he was governor, i have heard him say things that i have been surprised about. there is a difference there, i think, between a kind of native pragmatism among mormons, or someone who, say, as a repuican, wants to get certain things done because those are his republican principles. then he is going to be a pragmatist about how that happens. think obama is a pragmatist in that regard. i do not think he is that different from mitt romney in his strategy. that is why a lot of peop on the left are annoyed with obama, that he seems to not stand for
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something. i think he stands for something, but he is willing to go about it in fairly pragmatic ways. i'm not really sure anymore what mitt romney stands for. i do think he is a guy who wants to be like his father and he wants to be elected. i think that is driving him more than hwants america to look this way and the best way to make america look this way is for me to be president for eight years. >> i think i do not reay know, either, and more what -- anymore what his bedrock is, and that suggests to me it is not a mormon thing. >> here is a question. either of you can answer. can you envision some day prominent candidates running for high office in the u.s. who is a mormon and a woman? >> yes. >> you do not have to declare now. [laughter]
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>> no, i do think that is possible. i would suggest -- suspect that she would not have had a comfortable life passage through mormonism if that were to happen. it is not always comfortle to be an ambitious woman if you are a mormon. >> is that changing? >> it is changing slowly. and there is a backlash, i think. two steps forward and one and halfback. it goes slowly. -- and one and a half steps back. it goes slowly. it was said in our general conference that women should not pass judgment on each other for their tauruses about career and family. you would not think that would be radical -- for their choices about career and family. you would not think that would radical in 2011, but it is. i think the pragmatism there will be a benefit. it is true that hardly any women have the luxury of staying home and having six or seven or 10 kidd and taking care of them at
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home. the church will adjust to that reality. >> i have not seen anything written about this at all, but right now, everyone is talking about how when in, and especially independent women, are swinging toward the democrats, in part, because the democrats seem to have framed the contraception issue as more about a woman's access to contraception than a churches and religious liberty. mitt romney rene genser obama and given the importance of a female vote, i've -- running against obama and given the importance of a female vote, i wonder if he would be -- if there would be trends within the mormon church that have not been sensitive to that, whether or romney would be vulnerable. >> i kind of hope so. >> how much americans know about mormonism, i don't think we know
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mu. you intimated that, too. i do not even think that would necessarily work. >> i actually thought there was a significant amount of learning. there were a lot of serious question and i think he answered them very well. kennedy never talked about his faith and mitt romney never talked about his fate. lieberman did. maybe he had a higher hurdle to overcome. >> if mitt romney is nominated, he is going to be asked about these things. he will not be able to avoid it. >> and one of the reasons he is probably glad that the issue has been framed in terms of religious liberty is that the mormon position on birth control and abortion is quite pragmatic and tolerant. there is no position. >> and creationism? >> gazprom on not culturally, but dr. naille, quite friendly
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to science -- yes, not culturally, but doctrinal lee, quite friendly to science. >> given what republicans he to do to win their primary, i doubt whether the issue would me forward now. drugs and mormon sexism is the soft kind -- >> and mormon sexism is the soft kind. it is chivalrous. go up on your pedestal and talked quietly. >> he may start moving to the microphone now, if you wish. as you are doing that, when i got to college a very long time ago, i had to take a course. it was required on public speaking. it was taught by a debate coach at temple university. he gave us all a question and we d to come in and debate. this was 1960. i was given the question, should
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george romney be elected president of the united states? he was not interested in running. if you just want to identify yourself quickly and then ask your question. >> michael probiotic, and then a question. i think mitt romney's major problem is that he is in the wrong party. as a mormon or as a moderate, he has a very tough time representing the views of the republican party. i think his advisers are telling him to stay to the right as long as you can and then when you get the nomination,ou can swing to the left. huntsmans had given away millions of dollars to the university and the hospital in salt lake city. they are a leading family in -- mormon family in the country.
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i think huntsman made it very clear that he was goingo switch parties. i think for romney, he should have. >> i did not know that huntsman was talking seriously about switching parties. we heard a lot about this group called americans elected that would like to run a centrist kind of party with pele like senator snow. and jon huntsman wod be a perfect match for that. >> let's not forget that the person who is going to get the republican nomination is mitt romney, who is a mormon. we can talk about the anti- mormonism in american culture, but we are in a situation where we are going to have a mormon who is a standard bearer, not just for one of the two parties, but for the republican party. that is an extraordinary moment in american religious history. >> earlier, we were talking about -- or you guys were
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talking about how whether or or not pragmatism and having a moderate position was typical of mormonism. i would like to bring up that before this year, perhaps the most infamous more men in american culture is glenn becher, who is a thing -- mmon in american culture is glenn who is anything but moderate. i wonder if they will cut recall and his views. >> i think the most prominent mormon is danny is. >> i think ibeck -- glenn beck disappeared. the new cycle being what it is, he is kind of off the stage.
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>> is rush limbaugh a mormon? >> snow. it -- no. maybe after he dies. >> i think that is germane. he was not raised as a mormon, so culturally, he is not a mormon. he converted when he was married, right? >> yes. it's interesting factor, he followed me in sunday school and we moved away and he became a sunday school teacher. >> he was inspired by a scout, who is way out there. >> even for mormons. my publications finest hour may have been the takedown of the book by lou mulally. a fiery, wonderful, scathing review. and the back-and-forth letters. >> i wonder if i may be putting on the spot a little bit.
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i was at a conference with a lot of mormon intellectuals. proposition 8 in california came up. it was fascinating to hear them talk about it generally. they said three things, and i wa curious to what extent they were true. they said, first, people need to know there are a lot of mormons in california. one thing they said was that mormons did not really read, say, the l.a. times. they got most of their information from internal mormon publications, which led them perhaps not to realize how isolated they were becoming in their political position. secondly, they were told that the threat of prop. 8, temples would have to seal the same-sex marriages. which seems strange to me, because the method is religion, they did not seem to double down against it. the methodists convention does
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not oppose same-sex marriage the way the mormons and did. and thirdly, the flds people said, you know, if the previous president had been around, h would not have made the strategic error of pushing all of the ships against prop. 8. i wonder if you could comment on that. >> i was not in california, thankfully, during that time, so i cannot comment authoritatively on what people were reading. but it sms likely to me that they were reading not church- generated memos, but most -- memos from, i cannot remember the names of the different coalions. the coalition for marriage, or whatever their name was -- they were mostly mormons, but have participation from other people. i i did see claims that mormons would have to marry gays in the temple.
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which i do not understand that fear. at first, i thought it was artificial. but in talking to people more, i think people were severely afraid. they did not understand it and were truly afraid that somehow this could happen. mormon anxiety around marriage has historical roots. we did sort of have trouble doing the kinds of marriages that we wanted to about a century ago. i think that is always in the back of people's mind. wh was the third thing? >> it might have been a different policy. >> i think that might be true. it came up in the public affairs department of the church, and had a great sen of the optics of things. i think he might have seen what happened, and i doot think the president had the same sensibility. i think they were generally
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shocked at the backlash. nothing like proposition 8 will ever happen again, because of that backlog. -- backlash. i do not think. >> is that something you do not see in the christian/-- in the christian protestant denominations? there is this focus on the afterlife, the family, and the image of that is always a man and a woman. the evangelicals have to go running to the bible to support their revulsion or opposition or whatever it might be to homosexuality. they have not grown up with southern baptists over the last hundreds of years. you have to go back and find a reason for the way you want it to be. in the mormon tradition, it is sort of there. >> there is this notion that the unit of exultation is a man and
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woman together, or a man and a few women, depending on which century are talking about. but there is definitely this theological hadron are nativity -- heteronormativity that does not exist in other denominations as strongly. >> the phrase religious liberty was introduced to the conversation. we all know that in these conversations the last few months, the catholic bishops have staked a strong position. they have had a clear voice at the table, even in legislative hearings. as have some evangelical denominations as well. i am just curious if we could sort of reflect on if there was less silence for the mormon tradition how would this convsation, this national sort of conversation, be different. if you could reflect on that.
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>> i am not sure. i think that at the moment there are at least a couple of apostles of the governing body of the church that have taken up this religious liberty flag with great enthusiasm. and, you know, there is obvious history for mormons to be concerned about religious liberty. i think it is probably sort of incentive to find things that way, and it makes sense -- instinctive to frame things that way, and it makes sense. i am concerned that when mormons' talk about religious liberty, they are talking about something different. they are not talking about birth control. they are talking about gay marriage. by not disambiguating those
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issues, they hope to gain political allies, but it muddies the theological waters and makes it hard to articulate a distinctly mormon position. >> we have a few minutes. i am going to ask you to ask your questions serially, and then we will try to wrap up. >> thank you for a great conversation. i am laura everett. i am wondering. one of the commitments for those of us to engage in interfaith dialogue is you let your dialogue partner define themselves. what happens here, with is conversation about who is christian, when you have the great majority of christian traditions -- roman catholic, the broad protestant cents, saying they are christian, and you have the church of latter- day saints say that as well. is there an impact? is there a way through this?
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what does this conversation look like? >> jesper joseph. my question is somewhat related. you were talking earlier about whher mitt romney would have benefited from a speech or something like that talking about more monism. i immediately thought of now- president obama and his speech on race. that was a significant moment. i am wondering if he would be able to give such a speech in a crisis motion -- crisis moment, if it would be relevant. or does he had his bats? as we found recently, republicans in alabama and mississippi have not been happy he told them. i do not know the impact of that kind ospeech for them. >> i want to clarify that president obama is not a muslim. [laughter] ok. just for those of you who are listening. i have a question about mormons and christianity, but i think it
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is an interesting question. i did a review years ago of a book by the bushmans, who are well-known historians of more monism. it was a series of books written for use in high schools about american religious history. on the very first page of that book, there was a theological assertion that mormons were christians. i have always talked with my students about that question. i have alwayused it as a focal teaching point. it is an extremely interesting question to ask whether any group fits any category. it is an interesting problem. you can do it with all sorts of things. if you are in religious studies, it is particular nice to do it with a religious group where there is a dispute about whether it fits a certain box. first of all, you have to know something about more monism. you also have to know something about christianity. and you have to have a theory about what christianitys.
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so there are all sorts of interesting things to happen in order to have that conversation. i was disappointed in that book that it forestalled that question, because it instructed high school students that that was not an appropriate and interesting question, whereas i thought it was. to me, it is clear that if you have a kind of classical nicene creed doctrine of christianity, you understand mormons are not christian. there really are not. if you have, for example, how much do they talk about jesus -- you talk about jesus in almost any religious group i know, including protestants and evangelicals. maybe they are more christian. most of our -- many of the denomination's and christians we have in america are not christians if we have a doctrinal view of christianity either. if we are going to start kicking
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mormons out of the christian better for that reason, all of a sudden other people start getting kicked out. is rick santorum a catholic? that is an interesting question. rick santorum disagrees with th catholic church on the majority of social, political, and economic questions. yet he is presenting himself as more catholic than now -- than thou. i am not answering that question. i am jt saying i think it is a really important and interesting one. it is quick to go radiological. -- ideological. it is also easy to say that i am a good liberal, so i am going to say mormons are christians, or i am a good evangelical, so i am going to say they are not. i think romney will have to give a mormon is a speech if he is nominated, but i think it will end up being not about ideology but abt the cultural side of
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the church and will rief from him as a republican and a family-values republican. i think he will do that. but he is not going to talk about celeste you kingdoms and things like that. >> in an ideal world, that conversation starts with the question, with, "what do you mean when you say christian? what is your understanding of that?" neither mormons' nor evangelicals are good at asking those questions. mormon is and has no theological understanding of christianity either. they do not understand what people say they are not christian. they do not understand the theological history behind the assertion that we are not. there needs to be more teaching on both sides. >> the last word goes to you. >> i am delighted this has been marked by such intelligent and lively conversation.
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thank you for your conversation tonight. [applause] i would like to thank the center here at boston college, and for all of you, who have been an excellent audience with your questions. i also think c-span for being present with tonight. thank you for being here and enjoy the evening. thank you. [applause] [captioning performed by national captioning institute] [captions copyright national >> a senate hearing looking at u.s. trade relations with russia. then a discussion on the role of religious groups play in the
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arab world. and rick santorum at a campaign rally in illinois. the state primary is on tuesday. sunday on "washington journal, " susan ferrechio and ken rudin. then, and look at the developments of the war afghanistan. our jett -- testing is -- guest is jere van dyk. and erica newland joins us to talk about claims that google bypasses privacy settings. "washington journal" is sunday on c-span.
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interestingly enough, the u.s. did focus sometimes on some liberal activists when they were the victims of the regime's raft -- wrath. there were 20,000 or 15,000 egyptian political prisoners in jail, but she seemed to only focus on a one.
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that means that other people in prison, including people of the muslim brotherhood -- the deputy guide, who was unfairly tried in an egyptian military court and sentenced to five years in prison and served many of them -- no mention was made by u.s. officials of that injustice. it does not only and on january 25 with the beginning of the revolution. you might remember that on january 25, the first day of the revolution, secretary clinton and said the egyptian government was stable and that it was looking for ways -- and i am quoting. the following day, she called on all parties, meaning the protesters and the regime, to exercise restraint, setting up "some kind of moral equivalency
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between the predecessors and the regime's apparatus." the following day, vice president biden said that mr. mubarak was not a dictator. in fact, if you want to go deeper with the this, we can speculate that the message given to mr. mubarak on february 5 was not the message that we were hearing the american administration was presenting -- immediate change now. in fact, the message he told reporters afterward was in order for an orderly transition to take place, mr. mubarak meets tuesday in place to oversee that transition in september. is there is really a dilemma for the united states as witnessed by the recent ngo controversy. the u.s. has decreased
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influence, not only in egypt, but across the region. an authoritarian state which does not allow citizens to have a significant voice in politics and policy and which are aligned with the united states and heavily dependent on foreign and diplomatic support, the u.s. has much greater influence in those kinds of policies than in policies which have popular sovereignty and which governments are supposedly based on the will of the people. there is one other thing on this religious freedom issue and then i will stop even though i could go for much longer. this is more of a question. it does seem to me, possibly because the way the discourse of religious freedom by the united states was received in egypt in the past as a kind of colonial
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discourse and a kind of discourse that was insincere and that championed at one group, egyptian christians, primarily, at the expense of everyone else. i will be the first person to say that egyptian christians have and continue to have a lower status. because that discourse was viewed as such, it generated a backlash among egyptians. it might even be counterproductive thinking about it now to seem to pursue a discoursed that focuses exclusively on religious freedom as opposed to a more general discourse of focused on democracy, citizenship rights, and religious freedom. i will stop there. i was planning to say a lot more about islamists in egypt,
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particularly the muslim brotherhood. thank you. >> thank you. what i wanted to say was echoed this morning, so i will try to move quickly passed some of the things that were mentioned, but to reiterate some points where there are some questions i think the theme of the conference is these pcs that inclusion will lead to moderation and exclusion will lead to radicalism. i want to separate those two and take them in turn. i think it is really important to separate the argument -- the hypothesis that repression lead to extremism and inclusion leads to moderation. it is not a simple slide along a continuum where reduced pressure is automatically going to lead
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to a moderation in. there are different mechanisms that could work in each case. i will talk about some of them briefly you could easily have a system become much more inclusive, have a large number of parties, moved to a more moderate direction, and have some of those who are extremist axel late what they are doing. escalate their extremism. over all, you could see -- see more violence. the literature on oppression leads us to expect this. when you have an extreme repression loosened, you may have some poll that you are going to see an explosion of over all of violence. i think we need to separate these two propositions. the one that has to do with the religious groups is less about repression producing extremism, which i think the logic of that is fairly clear. it does not always do that.
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severe repression lead groups to go underground there are not a whole lot of options. it could lead groups that otherwise make strange bedfellows to work together. this but the basic logic of why we end up with revolutions. we have groups with radically different images of what society should be, but they all come here on people who want to end the regime. that happens because all the other differences get put aside. the logic of an inclusive system is to take away that unifying piont of or towing a system entirely. people then can move to what their own individual groups and individual agendas might be. for example, islamist groups -- those differences will start to pull apart. i think empirically there is evidence to back that up. as most mentioned, this is not
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necessarily questionable. this is something you have seen in a number of cases. i will return to that in a second. i want to mention -- 1. i want to emphasize is in a more inclusive system, you may not actually see extremists become a moderate. what you might actually be seeing, and what i think more often what you see, madras -- moderates do not allied with extremist anymore. that does not mean we are seeing them pull away. i think that is imported. something an extremist might not also moderate. very often, that is what you are seeing my book examines the a small-lot -- islamist in yemen entering the political system. neither one of these islamist groups fought to overthrow the regime or ever perpetrated
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violence on the regime. they have been allied with the regime. to hold those as cases o successful moderation, -- of successful moderation misses the point that they were not extremists in the first place. that is the first point. the logic of alliances among the elite -- not in the sense of socio-economic elite, but in the sense of politically organized leaders and groups. the muslim brotherhood, etc. in i think a more inclusive system changes the logic. the second side is equally important. it has to do with the
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constituencies are those groups. in a more repressive system, when groups that are organizing do not have a whole lot of options, they might work together or go underground separately. very often the broader population will look in for the group making the most extreme statements against the regime. let's get the regime out. let's to repair the system. they might have a larger support base. again, this is a proposition. the logic would be that not only does an inclusive system take away the logic for of moderates to have to ally with extremists against a repressive system, it introduces more possibilities for the general public at large. a public that wants to see something other than the incumbent regime now has a whole range of things to choose from. if you want to choose a more religiously inspired, you do not
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only have one place to go. you have a whole range of different groups to choose from. here we see very significant differences. we will have more about this and the question and answer because it is instructive. the logic and alliances among the elite -- a more inclusive system takes away the support system for extremism. it will not eliminate them entirely. even the best funds in the market these we have, we do not entirely eliminate extremists. we do isolate them. but they are there. a the hope is to eliminate extremism in an inclusive system entirely. that simply is not going to happen. >> the second side of what i want to talk about has to do with the expression of religion and religious freedom. i completely agree. i think religious freedom need
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to be front and center. you want to include in that the freedom not to believe in religion. the freedom of belief need to be front and center in any kind of exclusive system, whether it is democracy, liberal democracy, or some other kind of system. it is absolutely essential at the front and center. i would personally wish for more of an exclusive assist -- an inclusive system. the americans were polloi towards a more religious system. i am allying with the administration. what is for meatba,
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important about religion is not that it is confessional. you do want to have freedom of professionalism to structure your moral world around whatever framework works for you, but i would think of it more as religion of professional systems as a world view. an ethical, moral understanding of what the world is, how it functions, and how it should function. what would be a better system? religion is front and system in the spectrum of world views, but there are other world views. by virtue of a inclusive system is it allows you to find symmetry in certain components of that moral vision without having to be the same. the logic of trying to give the moderate voices more platforms and more opportunities to express themselves and to allow more places to find their
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symmetry. andsolate the world's views find no room for any alternative at all. my view and anything else is simply unacceptable. in that sense, different religions -- different religions and secular groups will find all kinds of common ground about moral issues. that is a significant virtue of the inclusive political systems. jumping ahead -- i think the professionalism is almost phenomenal to the other sort of effects of an inclusive and exclusive system. it is not necessarily about religion or a belief system, but about a system that allows faith, a different set of belize, a world view. i take it is that type of space that will reduce extremism by
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allowing for the creation of a state where the symmetry can be explored. groups can talk to each other and have open debates. i found this in at jordan and yemen. in the case of jordan, i found much more moderation in the islamist party because they found a lot of common ground with a secularist and liberals on a number of issues. there are often number -- often political issues. in the summer of 1993, the very first time, all of these groups had a joint press conference. it was a spectacle. it was a spectacle that they should all be sitting there together and agreeing on this issue. an open system creates the space is where we can say "i disagree with you. let's agree on this and push this issue together." that as a positive thing for
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tolerance. it also brings up a point that moderation is not a single position on a continuing. a group does not become necessarily moderate in every aspect of what it does. very often you find an inclusive system needs to political moderation that may not have anything to do with other issues. famously with islamist, very conservative positions remain on when, debates on the roles of women template -- can play it, criticism of foreign policy issues, notions of the best economic system, etc. it is not a mistake to say that moderation -- you certainly may find moderation in a single system orient i think you need to unpack the different issue dimensions and say on what issues does the group moderate and on what issues do they not?
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someone did interesting work in jordan on the issue of women's participation from the islamic action front. it is an issue where they do not want to cooperate. even when there is an agreement, they want to remain that separate state. there is a lot interesting to unpack here. are we out of all -- i am way out of order. u.s. farm policy also has a similar reaction there was a lot i found in agreement with the last panel. that was interesting to me. the u.s. has a negative reputation in the region.
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jordanian tell me that at the jordanian state told the children to drink more milk, they would leave buttermilk in the driveway. the same idea the united states. anything the u.s. is pushing will automatically be suspicious. any group the u.s. stands behind will automatically have a problem area the way the u.s. can speak louder is by being hands off on these particular mechanics, but very supportive of processes in general. that means not channeling the vast amounts of money to scabs. what do you need? do you need training? do you need us to come in and help you learn how to be parliamentarians? what would you like from us as opposed to let us tell you how to be good democrats. i think that will inherently backfire, even if there is a lot of common ground. oint.l end with one p
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i completely disagree with the idea that nobody predicted the arab spring brigid in fact, everybody predicted the arab spring over and over. there is an article in 1997 that said at egypt cannot be sustained. all of us working in the region, we know that pockets of people desperate for that moment. we did not predict the moment. i am not saying we got it right. the idea that everybody saw the equilibrium and nothing was ever going to change i do not think is quite true. i think it was somewhere in the middle. >> the obama administration did a review in which most agreed it was not sustainable. is simply was not about to change. it was the surprise of the change -- weeks after this thing was published, this guy set
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himself on fire. there is probably more agreement there than disagreement. sam. >> thank you for inviting me here to speak. it's a great pleasure. i am a former student of his. anything i say you disagree with, you know who to blame for it. the two questions that were posed to us that i will comment on and then perhaps look at the situation in egypt and religious freedom. the first question is very hard to answer in the negative. who can possibly argue that a fully inclusive, free, fair, democratic system that makes room for everyone is good. the formation of the question
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takes into consideration all of those criticisms that have been put towards the promotion of democracy. the exclusive free and fair consideration of a free society -- we are talking about something more than that. it highlights the system whether it is all voices, islamic voices, or religious minorities indicating that no one will be sidelined in this process also signifies a recognition -- there were problems there in the beginning, but we are talking about the long run nobody would disagree with such a statement. the second statement is perhaps a bit more problematic. the statement says weather and a
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regime of liberal democracy should adhere to principles of religious freedom. there are a couple of assumptions in this statement that deserve some consideration. the first of these assumptions indicates some qualifications. some of the voices will become more radical. there is an underlying discussion that there is a relationship between religious freedom or the lack thereof and religious radicalization. best relationship is one of negative correlation. the more you have of religious freedom, the less you have of radicalization that assumption, however, need to be tested with
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the reality of the situation. as open -- as indicated, it is circumstances and not abstract principles whether beneficial. in that light, the question is whether there is a relationship between the emergence of a islamism and between the lack or existence of religious freedom or liberal democracy. look at the beginning of the movement in egypt. 1912 and 1926 the establishment of the first organizations in each of. the establishment of the muslim brotherhood in 1928. the last of -- lack of religious
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freedom -- whether by providing more religious freedom we would get to that situation. we find a lack of importance of facts. true they have many complaints in regard to the west. perhaps when they view democracy, they view it in -- in the negative and not as something that formed his organization. it may be something to consider about this statement. the second assumption is also worked some consideration. there is an acceptance of the statement of the claim by as lamaism to be a correct interpretation of islam.
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islamism claims to be so it's something obvious to anyone. if that claim is correct or if we consider it is true it is something we should we think about a bit more. certainly islamism is a modern phenomenon. its roots may not be traced to islamic jurisprudence. in the case of the muslim brotherhood, there is hardly evidence of 2.2. why should we care about religious freedom? am i arguing that religious freedom should be promoted because it is a good human value? certainly not. there is a value in religious freedom. by religious freedom, i refer to
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the ability of people to bring religion to the public square, of making religious faith arguments in that open public square. there is a word missing that is perhaps taken as a fact in the united states -- diverse religious views. the reason why religious freedom would be extremely important in egypt and other countries of the region will be because of the ability of individuals to think differently. collectively form an alternative to these basic assumptions. if there is no religious freedom in egypt, you cannot write and criticize islamic history. then the islamic state model will become the political at model and the only one presented.
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you are not allowed to criticize or offer a different interpretation of the islamic opposition, then the existing interpretation, the one dominated by the islamists, will be the only one presented to the egyptian people. it is no surprise that these muslims will be only defined by how the islamists define a muslim. for this reason, it is important to defend religious freedom and to work on bringing religious freedom as an integral part -- as an integral part of democracy. this is the situation of religious freedom in egypt rid religious freedom in egypt is hardly a happy story. there is not that much religious freedom in the country. it is not iran, but the situation has been chased by the
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dynamic relationship between the religious establishment, the state, the as promised, and the general public brigid each of these has played a different role in the lack of religious freedom in the country. this is how they operate together. that situation has perhaps worse and much more. we've seen a dramatic increase in the number of attacks, but more importantly, the fact of the shape of those attacks. the general public has participated in those attacks. your neighbors are angered by the fact that you are at the church. some christian or muslim girls
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are with a guy from another religion. the perception of the general public or your neighbors is perhaps the most worrisome thing to religious freedom in your brigid returning to islamist and their role, i would look at two points. the first is how the muslim brotherhood has written very clearly about their view of the catholic church. the muslim brotherhood has always been accused of using slogans in their programs. they have a 96 page program that anyone can read. they have given us a page of the catholic church specifically. it is extremely interesting to read. first it highlights the muslim brotherhood of taking control of the christian endowments.
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the reason they provide this in page 64 of their program is that the religious imbalance should serve all religions -- all egyptians regardless of village. more interesting is how they define the church's role according to them. the church's role is to take its place along with other state institutions to fight invasion from the west. the church should cooperate with different state institutions and egyptian civil society. that statement reminds one of a muslim that has become less relevant in the world. the repression that the churches have suffered under communism to control the official religious establishment and of us use it as a way to control the village. that, i think, would be
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something interesting to watch in the future. more profoundly at in terms of the islamic religious authorities is how the muslim brotherhood deals with the islamic authority. the second interesting thing to note in the future will be this relationship between the muslim brotherhood and the -- how will they feel it with the fact of being challenged on the right? how will they deal with the question of the possibility of losing their base? the dynamic relationship between the muslim brotherhood and the southeast will tell us about the future politics of egypt and will also be extremely important in the face of
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religious minorities and religious freedom in general. thank you. >> very good. thank you, sam. all three of you have given project given us a great deal to reflect upon. -- given us a great deal to reflect upon. i would like to go down the line and get you to reflect on -- use this question and situate the things you would like. i want to pick up on sam's notion that religious freedom means more than private -- if you like confessionalism, i do not know if you would choose it or not -- the right to bring your religion into the public square. that can mean a lot of things. it can mean religion and politics, using your religious beliefs to make religious arguments are lost, policies,
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economic, for policy, as well as domestic policy. it can mean -- dare i say it -- proselytism. convince other people that your religious claims are true and you have to accept those claims and leave the club you are in, which is a big problem in the muslim majority countries of the world. >>it is a huge problem in europ. it is not a new problem. it is not an unknown problem. religious freedom -- meaning the right to enter the public square. does egypt really need this to succeed in democracy? we do not get a collapse in a generation or even two or the
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return of a mubarak-like figure. how important is this aspect of religious freedom to success? in my view, this means not only freedom for coptic christians. it doesn't mean that to make christian arguments in the public square, which may sound a little bit far-fetched. far muslims to criticize the muslim brotherhood or to criticize openly without fear of recrimination of an understanding of s, they may consider to be simply faults without being accused of blasphemy or defamation of islam. this is not just about minorities. it is also about the majority community. "summer? >> it is a very difficult question. i do not know if i will even begin to be able to address it in any way. i think what i will agree with
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is that this idea of religious freedom is not as simple as one might think. as you have done, you have separated different dimensions of it. in fact, i have not even gone that far. what i think is quite crucial at this moment -- maybe because i am living in this particular moment with regard to the difficulties going on in egypt right now -- ideas of equality without regard to religion. it is not really religious freedom, but i take it is quite crucial at this particular moment. i pay that kind of discourse has a better chance of succeeding in creating the kind of society and state, which i think many of us hope egypt will become. >> if i can comment on that. equality under the law is what you are speaking of without regard to religious difference, but including the right of
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religious actors to bring the religious news into the public square. i would presume you would agree that it is unrealistic to expect muslims in egypt not to bring their religion, but perhaps i am wrong. >> is definitely includes that. i do not necessarily think that that is the way to create the type of society we want. one of the problems is is that framing it in this kind of a way, looking at individuals and not as individuals but as members of religious groups, i think that does more damage in some sense than good in terms of creating a type of liberal democratic society that we want. i would definitely a clue what you mentioned in addition to what i put forward -- equality without regard to religion. in the case of egypt, i think
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this means dealing specifically with the creation of a unified building law with regard to churches, mosques, and so on. however, one could possibly a then differentiate that level or that reached of religious freedom within this idea of conversion. that is at a particularly sensitive issue with regards -- i have no problem with that, but many people do. if there is a way to kind of frame it in terms of religious tolerance, that might have a greater likelihood of success, at least in the short term. >> the right to proselytize and the right to convert others. it is an interesting question, how far a democracy can go, even
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a muslim-majority democracy, without grapplings successfully at some point. >> i always start my first class by say middle east conflict is not only the israeli-palestinian conflict. "want to say something about yemen. a couple of weeks ago, given as one of the extraordinarily transitioning countries. it has a tremendous amount of religious diversity. it has a large shiia sect. you have a very strong at influence by is saudi inspired. you have all kinds of different
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religious sects. in the case of yemen, and i think it would be a mistake to support -- to put religious freedom front and center. there are all kinds of other issues. the power struggle leftover from reunification. there are very progressive voices of there. a very secular, privatized in religious-communist movement. you saw a development from the yemeni socialist party at assassinated in 2002 at a convention one of the most contentious things that happens in the country as a someone will go into mosques and in the north and start praying. they are just standing there quietly, but they are doing it very contentedly. alternately, someone could walk into any mosque they want and
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pray however they like, but i take putting this question front and center is kind of a transition period in yemen's case, it would be very devices -- divisive and exacerbate all kinds of tension. it is interesting to sort of pull that back for a second and let other kinds of questions come to the 4. -- to the forefront. yemen chip probably have something like a federated state rather than a unified- centralized state. when you have certain areas like a village that has a very strong association with particular religious sect and was to preserve that, pushing it to them that they have to be open to other voices in the public square is going to be very contentious and problematic. i do not have a particular position that it should alternately be there or not. alternately i would like to see
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all world views tolerated, accepted, and open to debate. but in certain transitions, putting these issues front and center will be more problematic. i just want to bracket the timing of that. it could all played out very differently depending on the context. >> we have at this problem with religion in egypt. religious has been viewed with high suspicion by the elite and the intelligentsia that has form the modern egyptian state. we have never found at our peace with islamic systems. many will claim the problem is islamism and the views that are held, but in many cases the root of the problem is they do not liked islam. they have never found a way to
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deal with the idea of this religion and how it works with the muslim world. i think part of this is what was referred to a in the early panel as the huge influence on trans secularism on egypt. in a sense, we read voltaire and rousseau this is where the foundation of the egyptian secularism comes from. what egypt never had the model, it certainly was what they would have wanted if they could have achieved it. in this sense, i think any hope democracy in egypt, along with billions of other problems that are there will have to find a way of accommodating islam in the public square. people are allowed to bring religious-based arguments against political decisions and economic views.
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this is not prohibited. people are allowed to do it. returning to the general political situation, i agree that we are in a transition period. i do not think it is a transition to democracy. that is another story, but in a sense, i think the policy makers are beginning to realize that this is not the -- not a beauty contest. the nice guys -- the realization that the city is in front of a situation where each country is different, things might develop in different directions. we are essentially in front of the least ugly girl.
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we are choosing between not very nice options there. i think in this sense whether religious freedom comes at the forefront of the issue that people need to fight for or not, yet it might be one of those issues at the moment. >> very good. on that optimistic note, let's turn to our audience. i see we have a question over here. >> i am steve mcfarland. how long must egypt stay in this halfway house of religious tolerance if religious tolerance is not going to permit individuals of the minority faith to share their faith or to be perceived as even trying to persuade somebody else to the truth of what they believe or
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proselytize or say something that -- say something derogatory that could be blasphemic. if that is a bridge too far for religious freedom in our lifetime, is that much of a halfway house to live in momentarily? i believe that the ability to share one's faith and to disagree with the majority faith and try to persuade someone of the truth of your beliefs is the essence of religious freedom. religious tolerance sounds more like i tolerate what other people's doggett do on my lawn. i did put up with it. >> you should not do that, steve. >> that is not my notion of religious [laughter]
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maybe i am wrong, but i think if you look at where egypt is right now, where it has been, where its current state is -- we will be fortunate to achieve religious tolerance and achieved equality before the law regardless of 1's fate. the struggle right now regarding article 2 of the egyptian constitution. the principles of the sharia of the primary social legislation. the most realistic goal someone can have is to preserve the article as is. some want to change the article
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to increase the importance of islam and the sharia by either getting wrong of the principal. the principles of the sharia are some things that all of us can agree with. social justice, equality, true, and so on to either the sharia so that you can have more specific rulings be the basis of law as opposed to these wonderful things. i think if we achieve religious tolerance right now and probably for some time to come, that will be a significant achievement. >> i hear you. i think someone would say that the standards that you set of equality before the law is not met if one cannot share one's religious beliefs. we just had a disagreement over what equality before the law means and what religious equality may mean.
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the question i asked was not meant to get to the totalitarian issue. >> then you are in an arms race. >> that is a bad word. how about sharing your faith and trying to convince others that you are right? >> ok. i do not know what the difference is. >> a proselytism as a negative term. >> then you have an arms race is essentially. that is an arms race that is bad for religious minorities probably. it is also not a kind of race that egypt should be engaged in right now. "the question i was posing is given that reality -- i agree with you -- is democracy over the long term possible until this issue is resolved, at least
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honestly? >> very briefly -- i do not think that it is something radically or fundamentally impedes the ability of at a liberal democracy in egypt. >> i echo your piont. -- point. it should be there, but i do not think it should be their front and center. aestheticians are functioning the way people feel safe, i think there will not emerge more freedom of expression where people do not have to feel that one statement is a complete threat to their whole committed. i think that will be gradual. i think you can get there
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through the exercise. >> sam. >> there was a story yesterday in egypt. maybe a month ago, there was a schoolteacher in egypt who during the staff outbreak was sitting in the teacher's lounge and a conversation begins between 8 philosophy teacher and himself that results in a religious discussion. the philosophy teacher claims that the christian insulted the prophet. this automatically resulted in that teacher being arrested. the court system suddenly becomes very of functional. after one day of hearing, --
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they think that a couple of years is not enough. the demonstrate in front of the court and what a death sentence. this is a good punishment for such an act. what happened yesterday is a women's rights -- human-rights organization -- the case goes into another hearing. an appeal of that case. the guy cannot get a lawyer, not because he does not have anyone to represent him, but there are 300 other lawyers that prevent any other lawyer representing him from entering the court. that is a problem. no, you will not have democracy unless you deal with such an issue. the issue is not economics. it is a question of equality.
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can he get a fair trial for this crime? can he get a lawyer to defend ?im in that case or not abou should you work on this exclusively? nope. it is part of a larger picture. not today, tomorrow, or 10 or 20 years. another how about right here? >> thank you. my question or touching upon what you mentioned about constitutional development in these countries and the role that religion will play.
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taking into context of the various types of constitutional recognition of religion -- indonesia in its 1945 constitution says indonesia is based on recognizing that there is one god. there is also a provision that people have to practice their religion. in context of these countries, what do you think will be the future of whether they will recognize it outright as the religion of the state and how will this affect religious liberty at? >> i can comment briefly on tunisia. i spent some weeks there in january at. one of the things that struck me -- i was in a mountaintop
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town of the anniversary of the revolution, which is one of the places where there were lots of protest. they were defending the grocery stores that had brought down next year, making sure they did not get burned down again. people were protesting. nothing had changed after a year. one of the most heavily guarded things in town was the [unintelligible] another incident was that there are women showing up for exams at universities and you are not allowed to take an exam according to the current rules because you have to show your face. it was very provocative. a group established a caliphate.
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my friends would not take me. there is pushing going on and tensions, but one of the interesting things is that one group kept saying they were completely against this. this is what they wanted. the want to maintain it as a secular state, but the minister of higher education refused to make a statement. he refused to take a stand. you are saying one thing, but down the road, you're going to remain silent? sometimes on the topic issue -- sometimes at the lack of doing something speaks incredibly loud. the mubarak's regime lack of intervention on all sorts of issues -- attacks on university professors, attacks on cops --
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speaks of the volumes. in tunisia, everyone is holding their breath. there are threads of nervousness with some people that might be coming down the road. i am not an expert on tunisia, but i thought that was a released important point of contention. people are nervous about it prepare. >> we have time unfortunately for only one more question. this gentleman here. here we go. >> i am richard hyde. i am curious about other bases of identity in the countries you are talking about. they all speak arabic, they are mostly muslim, but what is to
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the french rate a tunisian, an algerian from a tunisian -- from an egyptian? >> if there are unlimited differences. these are overlapping identities. the arabic the two nations speak is not the arabic i speak, nor is the french arabic. there are differences in history, a colonial history and theonial influence, copp attempted secularism in tunisia is something that is quite different than what was experienced in egypt. there are similarities, but there are differences. of these are multiple
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overlapping identities. i do not know what else to say. >> besides comparison from country to country, the biggest difference between countries is cuisine, to me. within countries, i think there are a lot of tensions. in syria, the majority is excluded. the sunni and shia are excluded. some of the internal tensions -- even ones that are about religion are not about the content of those religious differences so much as about historical sectarianism. who has power, who is excluded. i think those tensions underlying things in long- standing ways. they can be exposed and expressed in terms of religious differences. sometimes they are not about religious differences at all. there are other issues that map onto those different identities.
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paying attention to that is crucial. there were some going into this mosque. it is very specific. it is also political. it is about power and repression in syria. >> this brings this panel to a close. i am delighted that we had a little bit of controversy. i was worried we were all going to agree on everything. that had never happened before in our religious freedom conferences. please join me in thanking our guests. [applause] if i might, before you leave, if i could just thank a few people. the many people who made this possible. all the good folks at the berkeley center. the director, our project associate, and to our master video and sound technician.
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he has been doing these events for years. gi


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